Hasegawa 1/48 F-86E Sabre
|KIT #:||Any 1/48 Sabre will do|
Scobie-do Productions slatted wing used; Aeromaster
“Top Guns of the USAAF” sheet used
The F-86E Sabre began life as the NA-170, with initial development
Externally, the F-86E was identical to the late production F-86A, except
for an "all-flying" horizontal stabilizer, which was the result of testing on
F-86Es began rolling out of the factory in early 1951.
The first F-86Es were sent to the
The F-86E-5 was produced in
369 F-86E Sabres were produced, and they equipped both the 4th
and 51st FIWs in
When “Bud” Mahurin used to give talks out at The
Bud crashed his first P-47 in August 1943, horsing around with a B-24.
When he got too close, his tail got chewed up by the outer propeller of
the Liberator. Given a $100 fine by
CO Colonel “Hub” Zemke, he was then assigned his most famous airplane, the
P-47D-5RE “Spirit of
In 1951, Bud volunteered to go to
Hasegawa introduced their F-86F Sabre in 1997, and it has been available
in various sub-types and limited-edition releases ever since.
The kit is accurate, though it really benefits from the addition of a
resin cockpit and ejection seat.
True Details, KMC, and Hawkeye
Resins made these sets, though none are in production and currently available.
Harold Offield of
I used a Hasegawa QF-86F kit I obtained for a cheap price in the estate sale over at my local hobby shop. Any Hasegawa F-86F kit will work, as will the nearly-similar Academy kit, since you are not using the wing.
Construction began with a clean-up of the little bits of flash on the resin wing. Care needs to be taken here not to break off any of the delicate arms for the wing slats.
I then test-fitted the wing to the Hasegawa fuselage, and saw that I would want to sand off the area immediately ahead of the wing cutout on the fuselage, and would need to cut off the fuselage panel that is integral to the lower wing part of the kit. This was done easily, and once I had the fuselage sanded smooth there I rescribed the panel lines. I also filled in the intake in the right rear fuselage just ahead of the speed brake, and sanded that area smooth.
I then assembled the fuselage, which is very easy, and made sure to put sufficient weights in the nose. One thing I did differently from previous Sabres was to attach the nose intake to the intake trunking before attaching the trunking in the fuselage. This insured a good tight fit with the intake and enabled me to smooth the interior of the intake. When attached to the fuselage, gluing the nose in proper position insured the trunking was correctly fitted. The F-86E cockpit was black, and I did that with Tamiya “Flat Black,” with detail “popped out” by dry-brushing with Tamiya “Flat Aluminum.”
Attaching the wing was not difficult. I filled the gaps between the fuselage and upper wing and between the lower wing and fuselage fore and aft with cyanoacrylate glue. I let that set up overnight, sanded smooth, then applied a coat of Tamiya “Mr. Surfacer” replacement to those areas and the centerline seams of the fuselage, and sanded that smooth. I finished off by rescribing where necessary.
|COLORS & MARKINGS|
I had recently experimented on an old model with an idea I had for producing “multi-hue” natural metal finish, and the success there led me to do it to this model. What this involves doing is applying an overall coat of Tamiya flat aluminum, then masking various panels and painting them with different shades of light grey or white. I then apply a thinned coat of Auto-Air Colors “aluminum base over the entire model. This results in an overall “metal finish” in which the final coat takes on different hues depending on the underlying color it was applied over. I then let the model dry overnight and applied two coats of Testors Metalizer Sealer to protect the very fragile Auto-air paint. This beats the daylights out of applying different shades of metallic paint, since you are using easy-to-apply Tamiya paints, then covering everything with only one coat of metallic paint. The result is subtle enough that it may not show op all that well in photos, though it looks great in person.
The wheel wells and dive brake wells and dive brake interiors were painted with Interior Green.
I used the decals from the old Aeromaster special release “USAAF/USAF Top Guns” to do the individual markings and serials for Bud Mahurin’s F-86E-5NA “Honest John” in which he was shot down in May 1952 after scoring 3.5 victories. I used the Cutting Edge “F-86 Sabre stenciling” sheet for the stencils, and the national insignia from another Cutting Edge F-86 sheet. The ID bands came from another Cutting Edge sheet of 1/48 Sabre ID bands.
I attached the slats and the landing gear, and opened and attached the
dive brakes. You will notice that the canopy is closed right now and that the
there’s no seat in there. That’s
because I am waiting to open the canopy and put one of Harold Offield’s great
F-86 ejection seats in there when they come out in late May.
If you - like every other Sabre fan - has wanted a slatted-wing Sabre in your collection (or maybe more than one) then these wing sets from Scobie-Do Productions are “da bomb.” They are nearly foolproof to use by anyone with average skills, and the result is a very distinctive Sabre model that didn’t drive the builder nuts to create, as would be the case with the other alternatives. Highly recommended. (Of course, there is the problem that there are not too many F-86Es portrayed in the decal sheets that are out there, not to mention most of the sheets are long out of production. That should be no problem for the possessor of a nice, deep “Decal Dungeon.”)
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Review kit courtesy of my wallet. Review wings courtesy of Scobie-Do productions.
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